On the eve of a special meeting of the British Medical Association that will debate how to respond to the government's NHS reform plans, Dr Kailash Chand GP, Chairman of Tameside and Glossop NHS, has written this press column asking that the BMA rejects the reforms in their entirety:
"The commercialisation of the health service will lead to a situation where clinical decision-making is increasingly influenced by financial considerations leading to the erosion of the social contract between doctors and patients. This is an affront to the public service ethos that glues the NHS together. The traditional role of doctors as the true advocates of patients will soon become history, just as it has in the US.
...the BMA must grasp the nettle and unmask Lansley's reform agenda for what it is – the final step in the privatisation of the service. No amendments are going to turn this sow's ear into a silk purse".